Achievement Unlocked: Author Interview

Hey, here’s a writing milestone that came earlier than expected: my very first author interview. J. Young-Ju Harris is another author who’s self-publishing a serial story. He asked me some questions about why I chose to publish Astra Nullius the way I did, and I spent entirely too much time talking about Mass Effect boners, like I do.

Check it out on J. Young-Ju Harris’s site.

WHOOPS

So I did something really dumb, and accidentally lost access to the domain name I had been using. Now demetriaspinrad.com is temporarily unavailable for purchase, and might not be released for up to 120 days.

WHOOPS. My bad. Sometimes you learn a valuable lesson about domain name registrars the hard way.

The bad news: A lot of links on this site are going to be broken. Please leave me a comment if you find one so I can direct it to the right page. Visit astranullius.com to get to this site.

The good news: I have been screwing with this stuff because I’m preparing to ramp up my publishing schedule and start posting more of my original fiction here. Starting in January 2017, I will be posting:

  • Once a month: A 4,000-word piece of a serialized science fiction story
  • Once a week: Link roundup of my favorite free fiction available online
  • Whenever I feel like it: More blog posts about nerdy stuff

What I’ve been up to

I’m still slogging gamely through manuscript edits, working on draft 3 of ?????. I’m also planning a wedding long-distance, working in a job with a heavy focus on content creation, and picking up a new martial art. So content here will be light for the immediate future.

If you just can’t get enough of works written by me, my latest day job project is Safer Seattle, a news blog with a focus on car, bike, and pedestrian safety in the Seattle area. Need to know all the exciting minutia about sidewalk closures? Want to see how I convinced my boss to let me write about Pokemon Go on company time? You can read my articles here.

Down the novel-hole

Hey, remember when I said I wrote two novels last year, and they were both big old messes? I’m diving into the rewrite of Novel #1, and that means I’m taking a step back from social media. I’ll be putting up some pictures from my nerdy adventures (it’s con season!), but other than that, posting will be light around here until this sucker is done.

Camp-Participant-2015-Web-Banner

Crispy fried

I have written 100,000 words of fiction since January 1st.

Don’t start with the congratulations yet, though. They’re not great words. They’re first draft words, and one draft isn’t even finished yet (yes, I jumped into the second project less than 24 hours after finishing the first, this was not a wise decision). To meet the goals I set for myself, I’ve got at least 30,000 more words to write before December 31st. And then I have to edit, which will involve a major structural overhaul of a story that was structurally unstable to begin with. And then I have to edit some more just to put some meat on this story’s bones. And then I have to find some beta readers, and get their suggestions for more edits. And then I have to edit some more. Then I can start querying, and in the very unlikely event that I have any success at that, I will enter yet another round of edits.

I will do all this and also find time to eat, sleep, work out, hang out with friends, maintain a relationship, and work hard enough at my full-time job to ensure that my raises keep pace with the rising cost of living in my area. And of course, I have to get started on the next project.

Writing a novel is like climbing a mountain. Does that sound trite? Of course it does. Everyone believes they could climb a mountain, and they will climb a mountain someday, when they feel up to it. From a distance, the mountain’s sides don’t look that steep. You just walk straight up the side, right? Then one day you decide to drive out to the trailhead, and the mountain seems a lot taller from this close, but you can still picture yourself at the top. So you start walking, and the slope seems a lot steeper when you’re relying on your legs and not your imagination to carry you, and after a tremendous amount of effort the mile markers are telling you you’re only a third of the way up.

And some jerks are strolling up the mountain like it’s nothing at all. Some are jogging up the mountain. Experienced hikers are passing you. They have climbed many mountains before. They won’t even be sore tomorrow. Some of them are so good at climbing mountains that companies will give them vast sums of money to keep going.

I am scaling a bigger mountain than last year. I am still not close to the top, but now I can tell you exactly how far I’ve got to go. And now, if you’ll excuse me, I should keep walking.

Life happens

I’m 35,000 words deep into an unexpected fiction project. I decided to set a challenge for myself by trying out a mix of genres I didn’t get much of a chance to work with in school: romance, action, and high fantasy. They’re all fun to write, and I’m having a tremendously good time playing with them.

The good news is that I finally feel like things are falling into place for me as a writer. I can create something with a coherent plot, consistent characters, and enough narrative tension to keep the reader interested. My first draft is going to need revision for consistency and style, but it’s the cleanest novel-length textual project I’ve produced yet.

The bad news is that this is almost certainly unpublishable. The mix of genres is too weird for all but a few niche presses, and I’m not sure they’d be willing to take a chance on something this wacky from a totally unknown author. I do want to see this story through to the end, though, so I’m going to finish it, tidy it up, and perhaps even try querying before I put it away for good.

I’m also moving to a new place, hopefully for a long-term stay this time, so the next few weeks will be spent packing and carrying and spackling and dealing with all the other annoying things you need to do whenever your legal residence changes.

This blog is mostly going to be the repository for short rants and silly photos until I have a livable apartment and a finished draft. After that, I’m going to start putting some longer pieces on here again, including fiction. I’ve got a fun story series planned out for 2015, because my next challenge is overcoming my fear of showing other people my work.